Posted October 3, 2019
Lorain County Community College today unveiled the expansion and renaming of the Patsie C. and Dolores Jeneé Campana Center for Ideation and Invention with an open house and presentation by Luke Williams, author of “Disrupt: Think the Unthinkable to Spark Transformation in Your Business.” The Roy and Bobbi Church Visionary Leadership Institute sponsored the author’s talk.
The Campana Center, originally opened in 2001, recently underwent a 10,000-foot expansion, which included lab and equipment upgrades. The renovation was made possible through a private/public partnership that included nearly twenty federal, state and philanthropic sponsors of the project. The expansion includes enhanced equipment and labs to provide students, business and industry and the community greater access to tools and resources designed to stimulate new inventions, foster industry growth and support education and workforce development – with the goal to position our region for new economic opportunities.
“As the community’s college, we focus on preparing individuals for in-demand jobs and filling the talent gaps of employers,” said LCCC President Marcia Ballinger, Ph.D. “In this era of rapid technological change, we need to also play a significant role in helping local companies stay competitive by adopting new technologies for greater productivity and to open up new market opportunities.”
The Campana Center offers business and industry affordable access to equipment designed to enhance competitiveness without making a large-scale investment. These partnerships have resulted in a direct alignment between industry-needs and LCCC’s workforce and degree offerings, prompting the College to launch new degree programs in Blockchain, Industrial Internet of Things, Cyber Security and Data Analytics.
Specialized resources in the Center include a digital manufacturing line, industrial 3D printing lab, and virtual reality cave.
“The Campana Center is Northeast Ohio’s Manufacturing Marketplace, offering companies a one-stop solution not only to equipment, but to the services and talent needed to grow their enterprise,” said Ballinger. LCCC, in partnership with local industry, recently launched an Applied Science in Digital Fabrication Technologies Degree that prepares students to work with subtractive and additive digital fabrication tools for tasks such as prototyping, proof-of-concept exploration, and rapid tooling.
Community members, including inventors, entrepreneurs, artists and educators, also have access to the Center’s greatly expanded Fab Lab maker-space. “This Center will be a place that inspires anyone who steps in to dream, create, to build, and most importantly, to see the connection between building a prototype and a company around it,” said Ballinger.
The Fab Foundation, a non-profit based out of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Center for Bits and Atoms, designated LCCC’s Fab Lab as a Super Lab during today’s program. LCCC’s Fab Lab was the first Fab Lab outside of MIT in the U.S. when it opened in 2004. Since that time, LCCC’s Fab Lab has grown from 100 square feet to over 5,000 square feet of comprehensive maker space where people can make just about anything using this open source center. LCCC’s Fab Lab qualified for the designation due to the level of offerings, capabilities and commitment to providing community access through LCCC’s Fab Lab. LCCC’s Fab Lab is the first to receive the designation of a Super Lab in North America and only second in the world. The other Super Lab is located in Barcelona, Spain. LCCC’s Fab Lab is open to the community approximately 35 hours per week, offers custom workshops, STEAM Maker camps and programming for K-12 youth.
As part of the grand opening, a 26-foot long interactive display was unveiled. The project was designed and developed by an LCCC team of faculty and staff using equipment and tools found within the Campana Center. “The goal of this interactive display is to inspire, educate and inform visitors about what is possible when they have an idea,” said Ballinger.
For more information on the Campana Center, visit http://www.lorainccc.edu/campana or call (440) 366-7866.